Civil & Political Right

“Considering that, in accordance with the principles proclaimed in the Charter of the United Nations, recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world … in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights …, the ideal of free human beings enjoying civil and political freedom and freedom from fear and … economic, social and cultural rights.”

(Extracted from preamble of ICCPR)

Civil and political rights are the indispensable factors for individual development. Hong Kong citizens seem to enjoy a wide range of rights and freedoms. But civil and political rights are unjustly restricted by the Government. The Government’s power is growing indefinitely. Some Governmental departments even abuse their power and do things harmful to the civil and political rights of the citizens.
In 1982, SoCO set up the Civil Rights Education Centre for the promotion of human rights. Its ultimate goal is to fight for the implementation of human rights through legislation and public policies. SoCO, together with 13 non-governmental organizations, founded the “Hong Kong Human Rights Commission” in 1988. We have been striving for the implementation of international covenants and advocating for the repeal of laws that infringe the citizens’ rights. We also successfully promoted the passage of the Bill of Rights in 1991 and the three anti-discrimination ordinances after years of continued efforts.

 

Prisoner’s right and prison reform are main focus of SoCO in recent years. Apart from helping victims seek their justice, SoCO also lobbied the Government to set up an independent complaints mechanism. In recent years, SoCO has paid attention to police abuses, anti-discrimination issues, refugees and those seeking protection, and to the development of democracy.

 

To bring Hong Kong’s human rights issues in international limelight, we submitted regular reports and sent representatives to the United Nations in order to arouse international concern for human rights protection in Hong Kong. We also held exhibitions, rallies and published reports and articles, as well as organizing educational programs in schools and community centers to promote human rights. We believe that the protection of human rights can only be achieved if the citizens respect them. In 2008, through judicial review, we successfully obtained the right to vote for inmates.

Social reality

 

  • There were 2,872 allegations in the complaints against police in 2017/18
  • All police complaints are investigated by police officers and approved by the Independent Police Complaints Council
  • Hong Kong Chief Executive and Legislative Council are not returned from universal suffrage
  • The Government has yet to set up a Human Rights Commission to monitor the human rights situation in Hong Kong.

Related projects